1. Arizona Diamondbacks Give Up the Farm for Shelby Miller
Now for the worst move of the entire offseason. I think there is a general consensus that one particular move was more questionable, and perhaps more disastrous, than any other move or series of moves. That move is the acquisition of Shelby Miller by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Acquiring a pitcher like Shelby Miller wasn’t necessarily a bad move for the Diamondbacks. Coming off an almost .500 season in which the team boasted one of the best offenses in the league while having one of the worst pitching staffs in the league, the Diamondbacks front office knew some additions needed to be made. That started with the team poaching Zack Greinke from the division rival Los Angeles Dodgers, but even that move wasn’t enough.
Arizona took it one step further when they acquired RHP Shelby Miller from the Atlanta Braves. Miller was made readily available by the Braves earlier in the offseason, and could be had for the right price. After failing to acquire another big-time arm, in the Miami Marlins’ Jose Fernandez, the Diamondbacks instead pulled the trigger on acquiring Miller. And the price was certainly a hefty one.
In return for Miller, the Diamondbacks gave up outfielder Ender Inciarte, who was a big part of their success in 2015, as well as two high profile minor leaguers in Aaron Blair and last year’s number one pick Dansby Swanson. The Diamondbacks got another ace-like pitcher to pair with Greinke and LHP Patrick Corbin, but gave up the two best players on the farm as well as one of their best players from 2015. The Diamondbacks may be better, if only slightly, in the short term, but may pay for this move greatly in the long term.
Miller is a strong pitcher, but he comes with a lot of question marks based on his peripheral numbers from last season. Add to that the loss of two potential future stars, as well as another above average major league outfield, and the Diamondbacks could be regretting this trade in the long term. This may be one of the most lopsided trades in recent history, as well as one of the best trades of the 21st century from the Braves perspective.